THE bushfire at Little L Complex near Wollombi was upgraded to emergency warning status just before 2.30pm on Thursday.
The NSW Rural Fire Service (NSWRFS) said an advice issued on December 5 indicated the out-of-control blaze, which has burnt 21,227 hectares, was moving in an easterly direction and fire activity had increased.
"If you are in the area of Laguna or Yengo areas leave now towards Cessnock," the NSWRFS said.
"If you are in the area of Boree, it is too late to leave.
"Seek shelter as the fire approaches.
"Protect yourself from the heat of the fire.
"If you are in the area of Wollombi and Congewai, decide now what you will do if you're threatened by fire.
"The safest option is to leave early, such as early in the day - and return only when it is safe.
"Only stay if you and your property are well prepared.
"Stay up to date on the bushfire situation and be ready to take action.
"If you are in the areas of Stockyard Creek, Quart Pot Creek, Paynes Crossing, Buckety, Yallambie, Blaxlands Arm and Yengo, monitor conditions.
"Know what you will do if the fire threatens. If your plan is to leave, leaving early is the safest option."
Bushfires at Martins Creek Road, Paterson, and Paddock Run near Singleton remained at watch and act while the rest of the Hunter fires were at advice level.
The NSWRFS has declared a total fire ban for the Hunter for Friday, December 6, as another day of severe conditions is forecast.
The ban, announced just before 2.30pm, includes Cessnock, Dungog, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Muswellbrook, Newcastle, Port Stephens, Singleton and Upper Hunter local government areas.